Do you have what it takes to be a good liar?

In other words, are you a good writer? *

Now, don’t feel insulted. Fact is, both accomplished writers and liars have the ability to recognize and accommodate other people’s point of view. If you aren’t sensitive to how others perceive your message, you can’t tell a believable story.

The above video illustrates how to determine a person’s lying ability in just a few seconds. (Hint: Have someone you trust watch the video and give YOU the test.)

And of course, there are the finer points of storytelling and lying to consider as well, such as knowing how to stimulate your audience’s imagination with just the right details that give your tale the appearance of reality. Achieving verisimilitude, like any other skill, takes practice.

There’s also a psychological element at work here. Both liars and writers enjoy being the center of attention. (Although you could argue that writers, who are introverts wrestling with extroverted cravings, really want an admiring audience kept at a safe distance.)

After all, the ability to lie is at the heart of what we do. Writers strive to craft an attractive and entertaining untruth. Isn’t that the definition of fiction? As Stephen King put it, “Fiction is the truth inside the lie.” The goal of fiction is to lure and enchant your audience so you can impart the larger meanings and deeper truths that originally inspired you to take up the challenge.

* Full disclosure: My wife gave me this test. Yeah, I passed.

18 thoughts on “Do you have what it takes to be a good liar?”

  1. “… writers, who are introverts wrestling with extroverted cravings …”
    You often find good quotes from others, but I’m seeing this succinct yet thought-through expression as one of your own, and I love it!

    Like

  2. (…response: finger up and on, pause, from which perspective, wait, still no clarification, do the circle but wait still for clarification before writing the leg, right or left, still none, default to my right Hence bad liar, bad writer. Or…)

    Liked by 1 person

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